Lincoln County High School’s Naval Cadet Corps has been invited to Normandy, France, in June 2020 by Historic Programs to participate in the D-Day Anniversary Parade and the International Salute to Liberation that will commemorate the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II, announced Senior Chief Siegfred Pitpitan last week.
Pitpitan, Naval Science instructor at LCHS, shared the news with the Lincoln County Board of Education during its October meeting, and went on to update the board on the Naval Cadet Corps’ activities since the beginning of the current school year.
Pitpitan plans to take 16-18 senior cadets and those in good standing, along with the Color Guard, up to 29 students, to represent the LCHS NJROTC program - “You should be pretty proud of them,” he said to the board. “We will be ambassadors for the United States and Tennessee.”
The cost, including airfare, will amount to $3,400 per cadet, he said, adding that he will solicit donations to help cover expenses. Additional information about the how the community can help is expected to be provided in the near future.
On June 5, 2020, the cadets will be involved in a public memorial for fallen soldiers at St. James American Cemetery. Then, on June 6, they will participate in the D-Day Anniversary Parade, which begins in the village of Sainet-Mere-Eglise, the first village to be liberated from Nazi tyranny by American troops, and on June 7, they will participate in a ceremony at the Normandy American Cemetery. The ceremonies are in honor of all of the soldiers who were laid to rest on the beaches of Normandy.
The events will also salute America’s war veterans and active military and their families and will feature outstanding performing ensembles from the United States, JROTC Units and European music ensembles.
Cadet Lt. Junior Grade Troy Holston, Cadet Corps executive officer, provided an update on the Cadet Corps, saying that 84 cadets are enrolled this year, more than the previous year’s 69. The cadets have been involved in the LCHS Homecoming Parade, the 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony, met with Congressman DeJarlais to brief them on plans for the ROTC wing, and participate in the Buddy Poppy fundraiser for the local Veterans of Foreign Wars.
Plans are for the cadets to become more involved with outdoor activities, and on Dec. 7, they will compete in Hazel Green, Ala., Area 9 qualifier. They will additionally become more involved in academics in East Tennessee in February.